New: “Explorers’ Forum”

Posted on Saturday 13 October 2012

We are pleased to announce we are adding a new Explorer’s Forum on our website, for the purpose of including the voices of people in any bioregion who want to share their experiences of   developing relationship to Nature in place. This could be observations of seasonal changes – what is happening where you are – or ways you have found to more deeply experience and learn from your own place. We invite you to send us an essay or just your observations that may be of interest to others.  To participate, please send your observations to info@exploringsenseofplace.org, and we will publish them as space and relevance allow. We hope this will be a forum of shared ideas that will be of benefit to all of us in our explorations.

Joanna @ 11:24 pm
Filed under: Latest News
ESoP at Wisconsin Symposium – Postponed

Posted on Wednesday 25 July 2012

We are honored to have been invited to participate in The 2012 Niagara Escarpment Symposium, Cultivating a Sense of Place being held September 20 – 21, 2012 January 10th and 11th 2013 at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay! Karen Harwell will be a keynote speaker with a talk on “History and a Sense of Place.”  Please see their website for preliminary details, and we will report more later. This is being put on by group of dedicated people from the Niagara Escarpment Resource Network, who have decided to fold all of their efforts – education, economic development, resource protection, geotourism, etc. – under the umbrella of “sense of place.” We expect this to be an enriching and encouraging event.

Joanna @ 10:57 pm
Filed under: Latest News
Celebrating Earth Day 2012!

Posted on Sunday 22 April 2012

ESoP in the community

Today we will join other organizations at the Earth Day Peace and Social Justice Craft, Gift, and Info Fair in Palo Alto California. We will be there from 11:00 to 2:30 p.m.  (First Presbyterian Church of Palo Alto, 1140 Cowper Street, Palo Alto.) If you are in the area, drop by and say hello. Our guidebook will be on display and for sale, and we will be sharing information on the importance – and joy! – of experiencing a Sense of Place.

Recently Exploring a Sense of Place also participated in Eco-Go Green Week/BioSITE Open House at the Children’s Discovery Museum in San Jose CA, and enjoying interacting with children and their families with the subject of water. The energy and enthusiasm was high, and we celebrated the wonders, beauty  and necessity of water, and of getting to know our own watershed.

Coming up:

Next week, April 28th, we will have a table at Spring in Guadalupe Gardens in San Jose, put on by the Guadalupe River Park Conservancy. Come and enjoy a beautiful Spring day in the gardens! Join in the resurgence of a Sense of Place!

Joanna @ 4:45 pm
Filed under: Latest News andUncategorized
We are now a project of Acterra!

Posted on Thursday 1 July 2010

We are happy to announce that Exploring a Sense of Place becomes a fiscally sponsored project of Acterra on July 1, 2010. Our purpose remains the same as it has been for the last four years when we were a part of Conexions: Exploring a Sense of Place is a program designed to provide the means by which people anywhere on Earth can reconnect with the natural world where they live, assisted by our guidebook, leadership training workshops and local courses. The series of explorations foster familiarity with the local geology, weather and climate, wildlife and Earth wisdom of indigenous people.

Our current focus is to mentor individuals and groups through the use of our Exploring a Sense of Place guidebook to create their own process/program for exploring the place where they live. Our intention is to broadcast this possibility to new watersheds and landscapes by getting our guidebook into the hands of many more people who will use it to initiate their own process.

Watch for updates on this website!

Joanna @ 6:58 pm
Filed under: Latest News
Guidebook Available

Posted on Tuesday 23 March 2010

Exploring a Sense of Place, How to create your own local program for reconnecting with Nature is available! Order it today. This guidebook will help you with your own process of discovery and reconnection with the natural world where you live. This book will inspire you and give you all the practical tools you need to design, develop, organize, and produce an Exploring a Sense of Place program specific to your own bioregion. Click here to order yours. ORDER THE BOOK

Guidebook

Joanna @ 11:00 am
Filed under: Latest News
Restoration and Preservation

Posted on Thursday 18 February 2010

On Monday March 8 we will have two speakers. Paul Heiple will talk about “The Impacts of Land Use on the Arastradero Preserve and the Benefits of Good Land Use from the Beginning”. Franklin Olmsted will give us a brief account of volunteer restoration efforts by Friends of Foothills Park and California Native Plant Society at Foothills Park from 1996 to 2010.

Arastradero Preserve is a beautiful mixture of rolling savanna grassland and broad leaf evergreen forest. It varies in elevation from 275 feet in the northeast to 775 feet in the southwest. Wildlife abounds on the preserve and it is not uncommon to see deer, bobcats, coyotes, and many varieties of birds.

On Saturday morning we will join Paul for a habitat Restoration Day at the Pearson-Arastradero Preserve. We will, enjoy ourselves while breathing the fresh air and helping restore the lovely Pearson-Arastradero Preserve!

After lunch we will be joined by Franklin as we go for a walk though the Preserve. We should see serpentine soil, the Arastradero Lake, riparian areas, oak woodland and grasslands. We will see many native and non-native plants.

Joanna @ 12:21 pm
Filed under: San Francisquito Explorations
Our Sense of Place in the Cosmos

Posted on Wednesday 20 January 2010

Come join us for a late afternoon gathering over warm cider and hors d’oeuvres inspired by the prose and poetry of three talented writers expressing the awesome story of our Universe in very different ways.

Featuring Drew Dellinger, Betty Kissilove and David Ergo

When: February 28th, 4pm-6pm

Cost: $30, $27 for Conexions members

Location:  At a beautiful sustainably designed home in Portola Valley overlooking the Bay Area – Address and directions to be provided upon registration

Space is limited!  To register, click here,
or contact Karen Harwell at (650) 938-9300 x15
or kharwell@conexions.org.

Drew Dellinger is the founder of Poets for Global Justice. His collection of poems, love letter to the milky way has sold thousands of copies to eager readers all over the world. He has shared his work at gatherings and conferences; in classrooms and prisons; in women’s’ groups, mens’ groups, and spiritual communities.
In 1997 Dellinger received Common Boundary magazine’s national Green Dove Award.  Dellinger co-wrote the documentary film, “The Awakening Universe,” which premiered at the United Nations in 2005.  Dellinger has studied cosmology and ecological thought with Thomas Berry since 1990 and is finishing his Ph.D. at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Dellinger lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Betty-Ann Kissilove has taught English as a Second Language at the City College of San Francisco since 1980.  She has been captivated and influenced by the Story of the Universe for over twenty years.  This interest, along with her history as a teacher, led her to write her epic poem, Great Ball of Fire!, a whimsical rendition of Earth’s 13.7 billion year story.

David Ergo was raised in Northern California, where at an early age he felt a deep disconnection between the western world and the damage being done to the natural world. No longer able to ignore the escalating ecological and social crises he first sensed as a child, he left his corporate training and flight instruction careers to pursue a path of learning and teaching about the need to face up to the ecological, social, and spiritual crises of the age. He is the author of the forthcoming book, The Holy Universe: A New Story of Creation, and Humanity’s Journey Through the Great Transition. He now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

admin @ 11:09 pm
Filed under: Events
Migrations and Reflections

Posted on Tuesday 12 January 2010

On Monday February 8 our speaker is Naturalist Annette Coleman, who grew up in Palo Alto. After graduating, from UC Davis with a degree in Environmental Interpretation, Annette worked ten years as a Ranger at Foothills Park, and ten years as Area Superintendent for Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District. She has also worked as a Naturalist for the City of Palo Alto, and now finds herself managing the Baylands Nature Interpretive Center, conducting weekend programs and organizing school field trips to Palo Alto Open Spaces. The title of Annette’s presentation tonight will be “We are in the Pacific Flyway”.

Then on Saturday, February 13 we will be at the Palo Alto Baylands Nature Preserve, the largest tract of undisturbed marshland remaining in the San Francisco Bay. “The Baylands’, is considered to be one of the premier birding locations on the entire West Coast, providing a safe residence for the endangered California clapper rail, among a multitude of other birds. With such lush bird life, unique plant distribution (which includes interspersed cordgrass and pickleweed habitats) and various waterside settings, we will have the opportunity to develop our sense of place.

Baylands Naturalist, Annette Coleman will join us in the morning. We will be refining our observation skills, and learning about the Baylands as a resourceful migratory habitat. We will absorb the great expanse of this preserved marshland, while observing both migrant and residential birds interacting with their habitat. Tidal salt marshes, found in the Preserve, are known as the most productive biological zones on earth. This is frequently demonstrated in the Baylands, whether by a Snowy Egret poised in its foraging stance, or the sweeping bill of the Avocet, or the hovering American Kestrel ready to pounce.

In the afternoon we will be with Naturalist, Drew Harwell, for our Reflections segment of the day. Drew has a BA in Environmental Restoration from Prescott College and was trained in nature awareness at the Regenerative Design Institute. . Drew has worked with children, teens and adults for over 13 years. His style of mentoring is to help students explore nature through their individual passions and creativity. Drew will be assisting us in deepening our skills in sensing, seeing and reflecting. We will have time for a silent, solo walk along the Baylands to a lovely spot where we can sit for a while and ponder our sense of place, reflect, write, draw. Following some sharing we walk back to the Conexions Center.

Joanna @ 11:29 am
Filed under: San Francisquito Explorations
An Afternoon with Nils Peterson

Posted on Thursday 3 December 2009

An Afternoon with Nils Peterson
Date: January, 24 2010 2:00pm – 4:00pm
Location Address (City, State, Zip):
Private home in Palo Alto foothills, directions to be provided upon registration
Contact:
Laurel Smith
(650) 938-9300 ex. 17
lsmith@conexions.org

Exploring a Sense of Place is delighted to host an afternoon with Nils Peterson, First Santa Clara County Poet Laureate
Space is limited to the first 30 people! Please make reservations and payment by January 15th by contacting Laurel Smith at (650) 938-9300 ex. 17 or lsmith@conexions.org.
Click here to register online using your credit card.

Cost:
$30 Regular
$27 Conexions Member – Become a member
About the Instructor/Speaker:

Nils Peterson, Professor Emeritus, taught for the English and Humanities Departments at San Jose State University from 1963 to 1999. For over twenty years he was the Coordinator of the Creative Writing Emphasis as well as the Coordinator of the Creative Arts and Chair of the Humanities Department. The Student Honor Society also chose him as Professor of the Year.
Peterson is a published poet and science fiction author, and has written articles in a wide array of subjects ranging from nature to Shakepeare. He has been an editor for “Discover America”, a contributing editor of “The Blue Sofa Review”, and a poetry consultant for San Jose State Studies.
Peterson was nominated for a Pushcar prize in 2005, and was named Santa Clara County’s first Poet Laureate in March of 2009.

admin @ 11:03 pm
Filed under: Events
Animal Awareness

Posted on Wednesday 25 November 2009

On Monday January 4, 2010 we’ve arranged for two guest speakers! Léo Laporte, a Professor Emeritus in Earth Sciences at UCSC and a Jasper Ridge docent will be giving us a brief overview of Jasper Ridge. Then in keeping with our theme for the month, Animal Awareness, Brian Knittel from Riekes Nature’s Awareness Center (www.riekes.org) will provide us with an outline of animal awareness and suggest some ways to help us open our senses in natural settings.
Then on Saturday, January 9, we will set out on our exploration to Jasper Ridge. There you will meet our docents for the day:
-Brian Knittel, Animal awareness docent
-John Montgomery-Brown, PhD. Stanford, Environmental Science.
-Léo Laport: J.R Docent, geology expert & specialist in serpentine soil ecology.
-Pepper Yelton: J. R. Docent and expert in flora of the region.

We will then spend the majority of the morning walking and looking for animal track sites. During our walk, we will also observe flora and fauna of the area and learn about serpentine soil ecology. Of course we will also be keeping an eye out for any lichens, mosses or fungi that catch our interest. This time of year and with all the rain, we are sure to discover a variety of colored fungus! (If you have any field books on the subject, please bring them.)

On the way back to the Jasper Ridge Field Research Lab for our picnic lunch, we pass though riparian woodland area and might possibly see a wood rat nest or two. After lunch, we will then visit an old Ohlone site with grinding stone area and cave. This day should be a full and rich experience!

Joanna @ 11:36 am
Filed under: San Francisquito Explorations